Ranger Program Descriptions

Ranger smiles at passenger on boat cruise

Join Us

Most ranger programs are scheduled early or late in the day to avoid mid-day congestion, and to maximize parking availability. Some programs allow you to "drop-in" for short interactions with a ranger as you travel through the busiest areas of the park. Ranger-guided bicycle tours and boat cruises require reservations and an additional fee because all equipment is provided by local businesses.

See also Ranger-Guided Bicycle Tours & Boat Cruises

 
 


Summer Hikes, Walks & Trailside Programs

Mount Desert Island District
For specific dates and times, please consult the online
Calendar.

• Fire Tower Open House

Beech Mountain Parking Area
Enjoy the views and visit with a park ranger at Beech Mountain Fire Tower, a 0.4-mile hike from parking lot at the southern end of Beech Hill Road.

• Headland Hike

3 hours
Sand Beach Parking Area
Join a ranger to hike and learn how to read the geologic and cultural story in Acadia's dramatic landscape, 2 mile (3.2 km) moderate rocky hike.

• Missing Mansion

1.5 hours
Compass Harbor parking area, one mile (1.6 km) south of Bar Harbor on Rt. 3. Look for orange cones. Walking from downtown Bar Harbor is possible in about 30 minutes.
Explore the site of George Dorr's former mansion on this easy walk. Look for clues and learn about the man who helped create our national park.

• Mr. Rockefeller's Bridges

2.5 hours
Parkman Mountain parking area
Follow tree-lined carriage roads to explore the stories behind John D. Rockefeller Jr.'s gift to Acadia on this easy 1.5-mile (2.4 km) walk.

• Ocean Path Walk

From 1.5 to 3 hours
Otter Point
Learn about unique aspects of this island park while walking along a scenic section of Acadia's rocky shoreline.

• Photo Walk

From 1.5 to 3 hours
Location TBD, Reservations Required, Call 207 288-8832
Bring your camera and learn valuable tips and techniques to capture Acadia's beauty.

• Sunset Hike

From 1.5 to 3 hours
Location TBD
Hike a challenging trail to a special overlook for sunset as you uncover changes to Acadia's landscape. Bring water, layers, sturdy shoes, and flashlight.

 

Birding Programs

Mount Desert Island District
For specific dates and times, please consult the online
Calendar.

• Acadia's Birds

2 hours
Location TBD, Reservations Required, Call 207 288-8832
Find, identify, and discuss some of Acadia's most fascinating birds on this easy walk. Bring binoculars.

• Peregrine Falcon Watch

Usually offered mid- May through July
Precipice Trail parking area
Drop by during program hours to observe a peregrine falcon nest on the cliffs of Champlain Mountain through viewing scopes, weather permitting.

• Seabirds at Seawall

Seawall Picnic Area
Stop by to look for and learn about Acadia's sea ducks and coastal birds.

 

Kids & Family Programs

Mount Desert Island District
For specific dates and times, please consult the online
Calendar.

• Carroll Homestead Open House

Carroll Homestead
Mid-June to Labor Day, 11 am to 2:30 pm, Tue and Thu
Visit anytime during to program hours to explore an 1800s farm home, hear family stories, and play pioneer games. Imagine what life was like for the generations who lived here.

• Junior Ranger Station

Carroll Homestead
Mid-June to Labor Day, 11 am to 2 pm Tue through Sat
Stop by the Junior Ranger Station at Carroll Homestead with your completed book and take the Junior Ranger oath.

• Super Sand Sleuths

Sand Beach
Mid-June to Labor Day, 9 am Tue, Thu, Sat
Explore all the things that make this sandy beach so unique. All ages.

• Touch Tank Talk

Dorr Museum of Natural History, College of the Atlantic
Mid-June to Labor Day, Every 30 minutes starting at 1pm, 1:30pm, 2pm, 2:30pm, Tue through Sat
Meet a park ranger, get up close and personal with intertidal creatures, and learn how to safely explore along Acadia's rocky shorelines.

• Wild Things

Sieur de Monts Springs Nature Center
Mid-June to Labor Day, 9 am Mon, Wed, Fri
Run, jump and investigate to discover some of Acadia's amazing animal adaptations.

 

Night Programs

Mount Desert Island District
For specific dates and times, please consult the online
Calendar.

• Campground Programs

Times and locations vary nightly. Check postings at Blackwoods and Seawall campgrounds.

• Knowing the Night

2 hours
Location TBD, Reservations Required, Call 207 288-8832
Challenge your senses and experience the mystery of Acadia after dark. Ages 8+.

• Stars Over Sand Beach

1 hour
Sand Beach
Sit back and learn about Acadia's night sky. Dress warmly, bring something to lie on, and please minimize flashlight use to preserve night vision.

• Special Event: Acadia Night Sky Festival

Watch for Calendar event listings in September.

 

Fall Hikes, Walks, Trailside & Birding Programs

Mount Desert Island District
For specific dates and times, please consult the online
Calendar.

• Autumn Ramble

From 1.5 to 2 hours
Sieur de Monts Springs
Join a ranger for an easy walk exploring phenology and how life in Acadia anticipates winter.

• Fire Tower Open House

Beech Mountain Parking Area
Enjoy the views from Beech Mountain Fire Tower. Hike from parking lot at the southern end of Beech Hill Road, 0.4 mile one way.

• Hawk Watch

Last week of August through Columbus Day
Cadillac North Ridge, 200 yards from the summit
Weather and wind permitting, look for and learn about migrating raptors. Additional programs may be added when conditions are favorable for migration.

• Missing Mansion

1.5 hours
Compass Harbor parking area, one mile (1.6 km) south of Bar Harbor on Rt. 3. Look for orange cones.
Explore the site of George Dorr's former mansion on this easy walk. Look for clues and learn about the man who helped create our national park.

• Mr. Rockefeller's Bridges

2.5 hours
Parkman Mountain parking area
Follow tree-lined carriage roads to explore the stories behind John D. Rockefeller Jr.'s gift to Acadia on this easy 1.5-mile (2.4 km) walk.

• Ocean Path Walk

From 1.5 to 3 hours
Otter Point
Learn about unique aspects of this island park while walking along a scenic section of Acadia's rocky shoreline.

 

Schoodic Programs

Schoodic Peninsula District
For specific dates and times, please consult the online
Calendar.

• Campground Programs

Times and locations vary nightly. Check postings at Schoodic Woods Campground.

• Marine Touch Tank

Dorr Hall at Schoodic Education and Research Center
Drop by to meet some marine creatures and learn about their adaptations to constantly changing conditions between the tides.

• Schoodic Institute Presentation

1 hour
Moore Auditorium
Schoodic Institute, a park partner, invites the public to a free presentation featuring a variety of science in and around Acadia. Visit schoodicinstitute.org for topic details.

• Schoodic Sleuths

1 hour, For Kids
Schoodic Woods Campground Amphitheater
Get the inside scoop on habitats, ecology, and history during this nature walk with children's activities. Wear close-toed shoes for rocky and wet areas. Ages 12 and under. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Last updated: February 15, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 177
Bar Harbor, ME 04609

Phone:

(207) 288-3338

Contact Us